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“Why the hell are you wearing a prom dress?” my brother Jonathan asked, coming down from his room.
“Well, Britney, if I end up falling down the stairs and dying, this beauty is going to be my outfit for all eternity and not some last-minute Disney t-shirt with slippers,” I answered with a smile.
He rolled his eyes. “I don’t think it works like that,” he pointed out.
I shrugged. “Tell that to my ghost.”
Jonathan scoffed. “It’s the first day of school, Zoe, not a fashion show. Plus, we have a strict dress code.”
I groaned. “Fine, I’ll change.”
I trudged back into my room and closed the door. I grabbed my favorite crop top and black boots. I stared at myself in the mirror.
Familiar green eyes stared back at me. I looked ok I guess, nothing that drew too much attention. I exhaled slowly. The first day of my new high school. How fun.
I did a quick once-over again. I looked pretty much the same. Brown hair, green eyes, freckles. A little thinner than usual, but that was to be expected after my mom died just a few weeks ago.
Even though my mom divorced my dad when I was little he seemed to be handling it the worst. I guess he never moved on.
To be fair, she was the only woman he ever really looked at. I’m not sure if he even likes me. It’s probably a burden for him. After all, my mom left and took me with her when I was two, and now that she was gone I was his responsibility.
Whatever he felt about me, he didn’t make it known. At least I had Jonathan. I thought I would hate him but I found out he was actually really fun.
The door suddenly flung open. I jumped back.
Jonathan grinned. “Come on! You don’t want to miss your first day do you?”
Ah yes. High school. A fresh start.
A dream come true.
I rolled my eyes. “A girl can only wish.”
“it’s not that bad. I’m sure you’ll find friends.”
“As if,” I muttered. “Some people are normal human beings you know? Not tall, handsome know-it-all’s that have girls fall at their feet.”
Jonathan smirked. “You were nicer when you were wearing the prom dress.”
“I’m nicer when I like my outfit,” I replied.
He laughed and grabbed my shoulders. “Come on Zoe, you’ll like it, I promise.”
I raised my eyebrows.
“If I come back from school today with no friends you owe me fifty bucks.”
“twenty,” he said immediately.
I tutted and jumped on my bed. “Fifty.”
“fine, you win. Fifty,” he said hastily, sticking out his hand.
I chuckled and shook his hand.
“Wise choice, my friend. A wise choice indeed,” I said.
He ignored me and kept walking.
There I was. Sitting at the back of the glass, wishing I chose to wear a hoodie so I could just hide.
The blonde-haired woman, who I assumed was the teacher, cleared her throat.
“Good morning class,” she said in her high-pitched voice. There were a few mumbles but overall, everyone was silent. I could understand why. Math was hardly a fun subject and even with my morning coffee I still felt sleepy listening to her shrill voice.
“Well children, I’m very pleased to announce that we have three new students joining our class today. Drake Smith, Adriana Beck, and Zoe Mi—”
The door suddenly burst open, cutting her off. She turned around in surprise. I heard gasps coming from some students. I craned my neck to see what all the commotion was about.
A tall, muscular boy stood there, staring around the classroom, a look of mild amusement on his face. The boy wore a loose black shirt with leather cuffs and black trousers. He had dark brown hair and his blue eyes glittered as he gazed around the classroom.
Mrs. I-don’t-know-her-name-so-let’s-just-call-her-barbie’s-long-lost-twin was gaping at him, but recovered quickly and smoothed out her expression.
“Mr. Beckett. So you finally decided to join us after skipping the whole of last year,” she said curtly.
The boy didn’t look fazed. Instead, he smirked.
“Nice to see you too,” he said. “May I take my seat?”
he didn’t wait for an answer as he walked into the room. I watched him with interest. Finally! something interesting was happening.
As he looked around his eyes locked onto mine and he smirked. He walked over and slumped down into the desk next to me. He stuck out his hand.
“I’m Axel,” he said.
I looked at his hand. He had long, slender fingers. However, he got better the more I looked. His rich chocolate hair that had tousled griminess which promised finesse. He had strong arched brows and eyelashes so long and thick, it should be illegal.
And then his eyes. God, don’t get me started on his eyes.
They were deep and catastrophic, a vivid electrifying blue as a great body of water that softly melted into a milky green. This close, I could see the flecks of silver in his eyes. He had distinct cheekbones and an angular jaw. His mouth was curved upward in a smile.
After a short pause, I shook his hand.
“Hey. I’m Zoe,” I said before turning my attention back to the teacher.
I tried to listen as she rambled about some random formula. I could hear Axel rummage for something in his bag. After a few minutes, the noise didn’t stop and I turned to look at him, annoyed.
“Will you be quiet?” I hissed.
He ignored me and pulled out a cigarette from a half-empty pack of Marlboro Menthol Lights on the table and fished around his bag for a lighter.
“Oh my god,” I shrieked. “Axel Beckett don’t you dare light that thing in here!”
“Why not?” he asked.
“Why not?! It’ll choke me, kill you, and besides, what’s the point?”
He looked thoughtful for a moment. “It’s nice.”